Many people who only know the streets stay tied down and loyal to the streets. It’s hard to remove yourself from something that once brought you comfort and a sense of home. And unfortunately, many get caught up with the criminal activity it has to offer. Bradley Cowens Jr., better known as his stage name Kam Dutchie, grew up amongst the Atlanta illicitness. He made sure not to let the streets define him nor suck him in. So, he turned to music to get away from the noise outside and created his own noise inside – sounds that he could control and make his own.
After graduating in 2010, Dutchie decided to dive headfirst into his work, conceptualizing the perfect fusion of trap and hip-hop. His debut album, From da Struggle to the Hustle, has eight tracks that all tell the story of the artist’s inner mind. His single “Bout A Check” brought him radio airplay love, features on Coast 2 Coast mixtapes, and a viral SoundCloud play. Although he made it out of grit, he refers to his city as a common theme prevalent in his songs and videos. It’s a place that shaped him and hardened him; without it, Dutchie wouldn’t be the artist he is today.
Realness is a product of your experiences. When you’ve faced so much in life, there’s no need for a façade or artificial counterfeit of who you actually are. Kam Dutchie prides himself on his raw persona. He’s been hurt and is honest with himself about his feelings, and in his new music video, “Pain,” Dutchie doesn’t stray from his backstory. A solemn opening of a drive past a cemetery sets the undertone for the video; as spoken word narrates the introduction, the rapper begins telling his story. He adds flowers to the rows of memorials and explains his commitment issues with romantic partners and family trauma. Music is his channel of expression, and lyrics are his understanding of his internal struggles and external forces. Despite the betrayal, the heartbreak, and the tribulations he’s faced, Dutchie continues to grind and keep moving forward. He uses God as a safe space to lean on when times get tough, but his own will to hustle is what gets him to where he wants to be. The artist pays respect to his fellow creatives like Nipsey Hussle and Juice Wrld, artists that lost their lives to senseless acts of violence and overdoses. For them, for himself, and for God, Kam Dutchie remains committed to keeping the faith.
Who are some of your biggest musical influences overall?
Well as an artist you want to look at people who are influencers through more than just music such as T.I, Wayne, 50 Cent etc. those are just a few examples of guys that pioneered their careers through music.
What’s the primary inspiration for your single “Pain?”
The goal was to show a different set of eyes about my approach with music. To not only speak about, but show a visual content of me speaking through my music to my fans and hip-hop fans around the world about what it takes to struggle every day in life and the catastrophe deaths of becoming successful in your life. I wanted to give the world my set of intention of what life with pain is like.
Who directed the music video? Was the video fun to make?
I, Kam Dutchie, partnered with Mega Visuals CEO Christopher Evay. We had phone conversations, time setups, and just things that you need to do as an artist with a production team. I wanted to give my visual of showing how when you’re successful the way you create your success can be a failure. Lol the video was not fun to make at all because it was very cold and it was one of those days when you look outside and it’s sunny but when you go outside the temperature was below 30 degrees.
What albums are you listening to right now?
We all have a different genre of music that we listen to, but personally I’m more focused on channeling my inner purpose and maximizing my full potential.
How did you navigate your career throughout 2020 with the pandemic situation?
By me watching how the pandemic not only affected my culture but the world itself including innocent lives and children. Witnessing the pandemic take lives, such as my family and others, had a traumatic effect; so we created a movement which led us to have an opportunity to show the masses what it means to have motivation, inspiration, and determination as an outlet that brings value for the masses to see.
Do you have plans for 2021?
Stay tuned and see!
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